Do We Need Arduino Mega Despite Having Arduino UNO? What is the Difference Between Arduino Uno and Arduino Mega? No and Yes, Arduino Mega is specially needed in some projects despite having Arduino UNO for certain reasons. We discussed about Converting LCD Display to LCD Serial Display and Analog and Digital Pins, increasing number of I/O pins on UNO. Arduino Uno and Arduino Mega are practically the same board except for some differences in the hardware differences. It is commonly not that mega libraries are different.
What is the Difference Between Arduino Uno and Arduino Mega?
Arduino official website has a chart of comparison :
For the beginners, Arduino Uno is possibly the best choice. Both has programmable microcontrollers. Arduino Mega uses Atmega 2560 and Arduino Uno uses Atmega 328P.
Arduino Uno is a microcontroller board based on the ATmega328 which has 14 digital input/output pins. 6 of them (D3, D5, D6, D9, D10, and D11) can be used as PWM outputs and 6 analog inputs, one serial communication line (D0, D1). Arduino Mega provides plenty of pins, plenty in the sense way to much more than Arduino Uno. So we can avoid the method described earlier to increase the port number. Arduino Mega based on the ATmega2560. It has 54 digital input/output pins. 15 can be used as PWM outputs, 16 analog inputs, 4 UARTs. UARTs is hardware serial ports. On UNO there will be one RX pin and one TX pins, in addition Arduino Mega has 3 Rx pins and 3 TX, 1 SDA pin and 1 SCL pins.
The shields which are compatible with Arduino Uno are also compatible with Arduino Mega but difference is that, you’ll have lot of pins still available on Arduino Mega. Of course, CPU speed and RAM is more for Arduino Mega.
Do We Need Arduino Mega?
If your project is around robotics with multiple motors and other sensors, Arduino Mega is practical. If your project has specific serial communication matters, Arduino Mega is practical.
Not all codes for Arduino Mega actually will work on Arduino UNO. But all codes for Arduino UNO will work on Arduino Mega. Two of the analog pins of Arduino Mega are also usable for the I2C interface. When we are using I2C, we will will not be able to use pins A4 and A5 as they are being dedicated to the communication.
In reality, Arduino Mega is for the Advanced users for certain projects. Ordinary projects for 1-2 sensors, LEDs will have no difference.
Buying Arduino Mega demands some idea around electronics. There are Mega clones which bring out every pin to a header. Many of these are clones, are quite good and reliable, and some have desirable features not found on official boards!
Can we build Arduino Mega on Breadboard like Arduino UNO? Yes, but only for special need for hardware tweak. Actually ATmega2560 is SMD component and costs over 50% of China Clones of Mega making it buying China Clone practical for first time.